Build Your Own Pentium III PC

Build Your Own Pentium III PC is a big fat book that is intended to put into a single reference source all the information anyone would need about what to buy, and how to stick it all together to make a computer.

At $49.95 such a book could represent serious savings to a would-be computer owner on a tight budget. That's the theory, anyway; sadly, this 637-page tome fails to make the grade on several fronts.

Large portions of the book can only be described as shameless padding: for example, pages 430 to 538 have nothing to do with the job in hand. Worse, after an exhaustive and high-quality breakdown of the components a purchaser will need, the author skimps on the actual "meat and potatoes" of his book's title, instead repeatedly retreating into entreaties to read the paperwork that comes with the components. The book completely ignores the most difficult task of assembly, i.e., getting the machine to recognise the CD-ROM drive so that the operating system can be installed. However, plenty of space is given for long tracts about voice recognition software and cordless mice.

The book shows signs of being a patchily updated version of an earlier text, referring to 1997 as being in the future and addressing questions about USB peripherals that have been old hat for well over a year. As a final nail in the coffin for Australian readers, all prices are in US dollars and all contact details are localised for US residents.

Bottom line? Not a bad book for someone who wants a general grounding in computer components, but if you intend using this work for reference while assembling a computer, keep your rabbit's foot handy.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Alex Rieneck

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?